All custom calligraphy items are made-to-order in our little Beijing artwork-mounting workshop.

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Your Chinese / Japanese Calligraphy Search for "Breath"...

Quick links to words on this page...

  1. Life in Every Breath
  2. Breathe
  3. Living / Live Life
  4. Inhale
  5. Five Ancestors Fist
  6. Three Treasures of Chinese Medicine
  7. Life Energy / Spiritual Energy

Life in Every Breath

Japan hakuiki hitotsu nimo seimei ga yadori
Life in Every Breath Wall Scroll

吐く息一つにも生命が宿り means, "life in every breath" in Japanese.

This phrase is more like "every single breath as you live and dwell."

The characters breakdown this way:
吐く息 (hakuiki) to breathe; exhaled air; one's breath; breathing.
一つ (hitotsu) one; only; just.
にも (nimo) also; too; as well; even.
生命 (seimei) life; existence; living.
が (ga) particle.
宿り (yadori) to lodge; to dwell; lodging; abode; shelter.

Note: Because this selection contains some special Japanese Hiragana characters, it should be written by a Japanese calligrapher.

Life in Every Breath

China shēng huó zhōng de měi yī cì hū xī
Life in Every Breath Wall Scroll

生活中的每一次呼吸 means, "life in every breath" in Chinese.

This phrase is more like "every breath in life," as if it's a quantity of breaths that makes up your life.

There are many ways to understand this phrase in English, so this is one of a few ways it could be translated into Chinese. If you're looking for a different meaning, post a on the Chinese Calligraphy Question Forum.


China hū xī
Japan ko kyuu
Breathe Wall Scroll

This breathe, breathing or breath in Chinese characters, old Korean Hanja and Japanese Kanji.

These two characters literally mean to exhale and inhale. Maybe this will remind you to, "just breathe."

Living / Live Life

China shēng huó
Japan sei katsu
Living / Live Life Wall Scroll

生活 means life, living, to live, or the state of being alive. It can also refer to your daily existence or livelihood. It can also be a suggestion to just "Live life."

生活 is also the term used in other titles such as "healthy living" or Lance Armstrong's "Livestrong" campaign (Chinese title for Livestrong only).

If you need a reminder that you are alive, and to take a breath, this might be the perfect wall scroll for you.


China xī rù
Japan kyuu nyuu
Inhale Wall Scroll

吸入 is a Chinese, Japanese, and old Korean word that means inhale, inhalation, or to breathe in.

吸 by itself can mean to inhale or suck in.
入 means to enter (in this case, the body) so it clarifies that this is true inhalation of air into the body.

If you need a reminder to breathe (slow down and take a deep breath) this may be the word you want hanging on your wall.

Five Ancestors Fist

China wǔ zǔ quán
Five Ancestors Fist Wall Scroll

五祖拳 is a martial arts concept (some would say "school") known as Five Ancestors' Fist.

The first character means five.
The second means ancestor, forefather, or grandparents.
The third means fist.

The ancestors referred to by this title and whose attributes contribute to this style are as follows:
1. Grace of the White Crane.
2. Agility of the Monkey.
3. Precision and skill of Emperor Taizu (great mythical ancestor).
4. Power of Luohan (Buddhist arhat).
5. Breath of Damo (founder of Buddhism, or the first Buddha).

Three Treasures of Chinese Medicine

China jīng qì shén
Three Treasures of Chinese Medicine Wall Scroll

These are the characters jing, qi, and shen.

As a set, these three characters are known in English as the treasures of traditional Chinese medicine, the treasures of Qi Gong, or the three treasures of Taoism / Daoism.

Sometimes this set is titled as 三寶 (sānbǎo) or "three treasures" but here, we're writing each treasure out.

Here's how these characters are perceived in this context...
Jing: nutritive essence; refined; perfected; pure
Qi: vitality; energy; force; breath; vigor
Shen: spirit; soul; mind; being

To keep it simple, you can use, "essence, vitality and spirit," to define these.

Life Energy / Spiritual Energy

Chi Energy: Essence of Life / Energy Flow
Japan ki
Life Energy / Spiritual Energy Wall Scroll

This energy flow is a fundamental concept of traditional Asian culture.

This character is romanized as "Qi" or "Chi" in Chinese, "Gi" in Korean, and "Ki" in Japanese.
Chi is believed to be part of everything that exists, as in “life force” or “spiritual energy”. It is most often translated as “energy flow,” or literally as “air” or “breath”. Some people will simply translate this as “spirit” but you have to take into consideration the kind of spirit we're talking about. I think this is weighted more toward energy than spirit.

米The character itself is a representation of steam (or breath) rising from rice. To clarify, the character for rice is shown to the right.

Steam was apparently seen as visual evidence of the release of "life energy" when this concept was first developed. The Qi / Chi / Ki character is still used in compound words to mean steam or vapor.

氣氣The etymology of this character is a bit complicated. It's suggested that the first form of this character from bronze script (about 2500 years ago) looked like one the symbols shown to the right.

氣However, it was easy to confuse this with the character for the number three. So the rice radical was added by 221 B.C. (the exact time of this change is debated). This first version with the rice radical is shown to the right.

The idea of Qi / Chi / Ki is really a philosophical concept. It's often used to refer to the “flow” of metaphysical energy that sustains living beings. Yet there is much debate that has continued for thousands of years as to whether Qi / Chi / Ki is pure energy, or consists partially, or fully of matter.

You can also see the character for Qi / Chi / Ki in common compound words such as Tai Chi / Tai Qi, Aikido, Reiki and Qi Gong / Chi Kung.

In the modern Japanese Kanji, the rice radical has been changed into two strokes that form an X.

気The original and traditional Chinese form is still understood in Japanese but we can also offer that modern Kanji form in our custom calligraphy. If you want this Japanese Kanji, please click on the character to the right, instead of the “Select and Customize” button above.

More language notes: This is pronounced like “chee” in Mandarin Chinese, and like “key” in Japanese.
This is also the same way to write this in Korean Hanja where it is Romanized as “gi” and pronounced like “gee” but with a real G-sound, not a J-sound.
Though Vietnamese no longer use Chinese characters in their daily language, this character is still widely known in Vietnam.

See Also:  Energy | Life Force | Vitality | Life | Birth | Soul

The following table may be helpful for those studying Chinese or Japanese...

Title CharactersRomaji(Romanized Japanese)Various forms of Romanized Chinese
Life in Every Breath 吐く息一つにも生命が宿りhakuiki hitotsu nimo seimei ga yadori
Life in Every Breath 生活中的每一次呼吸shēng huó zhōng de měi yī cì hū xī
sheng1 huo2 zhong1 de mei3 yi1 ci4 hu1 xi1
sheng huo zhong de mei yi ci hu xi
sheng huo chung te mei i tz`u hu hsi
sheng huo chung te mei i tzu hu hsi
Breathe 呼吸ko kyuu / kokyuu / ko kyu / kokyuhū xī / hu1 xi1 / hu xi / huxi hu hsi / huhsi
Live Life
生活sei katsu / seikatsushēng huó
sheng1 huo2
sheng huo
Inhale 吸入kyuu nyuu / kyuunyuu / kyu nyu / kyunyuxī rù / xi1 ru4 / xi ru / xiru hsi ju / hsiju
Five Ancestors Fist 五祖拳wǔ zǔ quán
wu3 zu3 quan2
wu zu quan
wu tsu ch`üan
wu tsu chüan
Three Treasures of Chinese Medicine 精氣神
jīng qì shén
jing1 qi4 shen2
jing qi shen
ching ch`i shen
ching chi shen
Life Energy
Spiritual Energy

气 / 気
kiqì / qi4 / qi ch`i / chi
In some entries above you will see that characters have different versions above and below a line.
In these cases, the characters above the line are Traditional Chinese, while the ones below are Simplified Chinese.

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4 Noble Truths
Cherry Blossom
Heart and Soul
Inner Power
Inner Strength
Ki Aikido
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All of our calligraphy wall scrolls are handmade.

When the calligrapher finishes creating your artwork, it is taken to my art mounting workshop in Beijing where a wall scroll is made by hand from a combination of silk, rice paper, and wood.
After we create your wall scroll, it takes at least two weeks for air mail delivery from Beijing to you.

Allow a few weeks for delivery. Rush service speeds it up by a week or two for $10!

When you select your calligraphy, you'll be taken to another page where you can choose various custom options.

A nice Chinese calligraphy wall scroll

The wall scroll that Sandy is holding in this picture is a "large size"
single-character wall scroll.
We also offer custom wall scrolls in small, medium, and an even-larger jumbo size.

A professional Chinese Calligrapher

Professional calligraphers are getting to be hard to find these days.
Instead of drawing characters by hand, the new generation in China merely type roman letters into their computer keyboards and pick the character that they want from a list that pops up.

There is some fear that true Chinese calligraphy may become a lost art in the coming years. Many art institutes in China are now promoting calligraphy programs in hopes of keeping this unique form of art alive.

Trying to learn Chinese calligrapher - a futile effort

Even with the teachings of a top-ranked calligrapher in China, my calligraphy will never be good enough to sell. I will leave that to the experts.

A high-ranked Chinese master calligrapher that I met in Zhongwei

The same calligrapher who gave me those lessons also attracted a crowd of thousands and a TV crew as he created characters over 6-feet high. He happens to be ranked as one of the top 100 calligraphers in all of China. He is also one of very few that would actually attempt such a feat.

Check out my lists of Japanese Kanji Calligraphy Wall Scrolls and Old Korean Hanja Calligraphy Wall Scrolls.

Some people may refer to this entry as Breath Kanji, Breath Characters, Breath in Mandarin Chinese, Breath Characters, Breath in Chinese Writing, Breath in Japanese Writing, Breath in Asian Writing, Breath Ideograms, Chinese Breath symbols, Breath Hieroglyphics, Breath Glyphs, Breath in Chinese Letters, Breath Hanzi, Breath in Japanese Kanji, Breath Pictograms, Breath in the Chinese Written-Language, or Breath in the Japanese Written-Language.